Cybersecurity bill heads to house floor

Committee Unanimously OK’s Critical Infrastructure Measure

by. Eric Chabrow

Bipartisanship – a rare commodity on Capitol Hill these days – manifested itself with the House Homeland Security Committee’s approval of a bill aimed to help buttress the cybersecurity of the nation’s critical infrastructure and the federal government.

The legislation – the National Cybersecurity and Critical Infrastructure Protection Act – won unanimous approval of Republicans and Democrats committee members on Feb. 5. Plus, a host of groups that, at times, find themselves on opposite ends of the political spectrum, such as the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Defense Industrial Association, endorsed it.

“I’m proud to say the final product is – as our friends in the ACLU have called it – both pro-security and pro-privacy,” says Committee Chairman Michael McCaul, R-Texas. “I think that is a rare concept in today’s world.”

The bill, HR 3696, would codify in law the National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center, a federal civilian agency within the Department of Homeland Security that promotes real-time cyberthreat information sharing across critical infrastructure sectors.

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